How the Vaillant Group gained an autonomous external learning environment

SAP SuccessFactors excels at keeping corporate learning and training initiatives accessible, neat, tidy, and easily tracked and reported on. However, this wasn’t the case when employees requested external training courses at Vaillant Group, an international manufacturer of systems for heating, ventilation and hot water including heat pumps with headquarters in Germany.

TRM vailliant header

A great personalised onboarding experience for all new employees

As a well-established SAP SuccessFactors user, the Vaillant Group was already familiar with the Learning module, which it uses to provide a wide range of training and development offerings and follow-up capabilities to its employees. However, training hosted and organised by an external organisation was not part of this automated flow.

Stefan Jommersbach Vailliant Group

“It often happens that an employee wants to participate in a training course that isn’t part of our standard internal offering. When this happens, the employee must request the course through their respective HR contact – who also must approve the cost and deal with the related administration.”

Stefan Jommersbach - Senior HR Specialist Global Learning

Challenges for The Vaillant Group’s HR team:

  • Extra manual labour was required to process requests and tracking of external courses by HR;
  • Subsidy eligibility and regulatory compliance requires a clear overview of employee trainings, which had to be compiled through interactions with approving stakeholders;
  • Total cost of external training was often a puzzle, as this also had to be compiled through individual interactions with stakeholders;
  • Little visibility into training offering gaps due to lack of insight into which external trainings are requested most.
  • Lack of configuration options and limited functional scope of the default SF-182 form;

Challenge for The Vaillant Group’s employees:

  • Approvers’ extra administrative work related to tracking their employees’ training requests, approvals, costs and follow-ups.

Putting all the pieces together with the Training Request Manager

The Vaillant Group wanted a user-friendly solution for external training that would integrate with their existing SAP SuccessFactors Learning environment – with automated data flow and the capability to adapt to internal procedures and country-specific legal requirements.

“That’s when we came across Flexso’s Training Request Manager (TRM) – which is an extension to SAP SuccessFactors – on the SAP StoreMartin Frohberg, HR Specialist Global IT and Digitalisation, confirms. “It seemed to suit our needs perfectly.”

TRM App Flexso brochure

The Vaillant Group’s project team decided to begin with a pilot rollout of the solution in Germany before scaling out to other countries.

The solution enables employees to request external courses, directly in the TRM system, which automatically sends an e-mail to the relevant HR team requesting approval. The employee is automatically notified when their request is approved and is triggered to confirm their attendance. All data ends up in SuccessFactors, which is easily accessed by HR. Thanks to a link to People Analytics, HR can even generate and pull learning reports.

Easy to tune and integrate

Stefan Jommersbach, Senior HR Specialist Global Learning: “We appreciate that the TRM is an existing SaaS solution – which made it easy and quick to set up and configure without having to build anything from scratch. And because the TRM is an extension to SAP SuccessFactors, integration was smooth and really fast.”

The Vaillant Group also benefits from the full-service Flexso approach that continually enhances the solution with optimisations and regular releases.

“Working with Flexso was a great experience – they tuned in with our team on a weekly basis and held regular status meetings to make sure all of our needs were met, and concerns addressed.”, adds Stefan Jommersbach.

Find out more about our SAP SuccessFactors extensions

Inspiration for the future

Success! Now that the Vaillant Group’s German HR team can reap the benefits of the pilot project, the next step for the global company is to roll it out across other countries.

Martin Frohberg Vailliant Group

“We’ve had such a good experience with TRM and Flexso, we’re also looking into other extensions available in the SAP Store that we can use to further enrich our SAP SuccessFactors environment.”

Martin Frohberg - HR Specialist Global IT and Digitalisation

Are you looking to automate your external training process as well?

Find out everything about the Training Request Manager extension for SAP SuccessFactors

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Written by

Bart Van Hove

Bart Van Hove

Flore Ardies

Flore Ardies